Body & Soul: Traditional Lulur

| December/January 2007

“Lulur” is Javanese for “coating the skin.” It is a beauty ritual that leaves the body and mind relaxed and the skin soft and supple. In this Javanese recipe, turmeric is a key ingredient. Turmeric is a member of the ginger family, and is thought to have magical properties. On many islands in the Pacific, it is carried or worn as a protective charm to ward off evil spirits. This total beauty treatment involves a light massage, body mask and fragrant floral bath. Makes one treatment.

• 2 tablespoons rice powder
• 2 teaspoons turmeric
• 2 cups plain yogurt
• 3 drops jasmine essential oil
• 2 drops sandalwood essential oil
• Light oil, such as almond, avocado or macadamia nut
• Handful of fragrant flower petals, such as rose, jasmine, frangipani or lavender

1. Mix together rice powder, turmeric, yogurt and essential oils until well blended; set aside.

2. To use, first massage body all over with light oil. Rub yogurt mixture onto body to exfoliate and polish skin. Rinse off paste in a warm shower. Fill bathtub with warm water and float flower petals in bathwater. Add drops of essential or floral oils to bath water, if desired. Relax in the warm, fragrant water.

Janice Cox is the author of Natural Beauty at Home (Henry Holt and Company, New York) available in bookstores nationwide. For more information and recipes, visit her at .

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